IC Cold Links: Pacers Set To Play Timberwolves; Barbosa Talks NBA Soccer And Playoffs

April 4, 2012; Washington, DC, USA; Indiana Pacers shooting guard Leandro Barbosa (28) dribbles the ball as Washington Wizards shooting guard Jordan Crawford (15) defends in the first half at Verizon Center. The Pacers won 109-96. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-US PRESSWIRE

The Indiana Pacers return to action at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Monday night when they play the Minnesota Timberwolves. Or at least, what's left of the Minnesota Timberwolves.

When we last saw the Wolves in Minny they were an exciting and scrappy team making noise in the Western Conference and feeling the wrath of Danny Granger after Kevin Love tried to use unconventional means to slow down the Pacers star.

Tonight Love is out with a concussion and he's not the only talent missing for Minnesota. Ricky Rubio is out for the year with a knee injury and fellow guard Luke Ridnour is also out with an ankle injury, as is big man Darko Milicic, so that leaves big man Nikola Pekovic as the remaining key player from the Pacers' hard-fought win back on February 1st. Speaking of Pekovic, I believe the public deserves a Pekovic vs. Kyrylo Fesenko gerth clash in the middle at some point tonight.

Among the links after the jump is a can't-miss Crate with Leandro Barbosa chatting with Conrad Brunner and Mark Boyle. Barbosa talks about his soccer talent and the games he's played with other NBA players that included Shaquille O'Neal playing goalie. Also, the Brazilian Blur matter-of-factly mentions that the Pacers have enough to compete for a championship in the NBA this year. Doesn't predict it, says it won't be easy and the whole team has to come together and believe, but also has no doubt they have enough to make that run.

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